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hut are ye, O pallid phantoms!

But the statues without breath, _ hat stand on the bridge overarching

The silent river of death?

THE MEETING.

Ljteh.so long an absence

At last we meet again: )oes the meeting give us pleasure,

Or does it give us pain?

?he tree of life has been shaken, And but few of us linger now,

like the Prophet's two or three berries In the top of the uppermost bough.

We cordially greet each other

In the old, familiar tone; S.nd we think, though we do not say it,

How old and gray he is grown I

We speak of a Merry Christmas
And many a Happy New Year;

But each in his heart is thinking
Of those that are not here.

We speak of friends and their fortunes,
And of what they did and said,

Till the dead alone seem living,
And the living alone seem dead.

Aad at last we hardly distinguish
Between the ghosts and the guests;

/»nd a mist and shadow of sadness Steals over our merriest jests.

VOX POPULI.

When Mazarvan the Magician,

Journeyed westward through Cathay,

Nothing heard he but the praises
Of Badoura on his way.

But the lessening rumor ended
When he came to Khaledan,

There the folk were talking only
Of Prince Camaralzaman.

So it happens with the poets:
Every province hath its own;

Camaralzaman is famous
Where Badoura is unknown.

THE CASTLE-BUILDER.

A Gentle boy, with soft and silken locks,

A dreamy boy, with brown and tender

eyes,

A castle-builder, with his wooden blocks,

And towers that touch imaginary
skies.

A fearless rider on his father's knee,
An eager listener unto stories told

At the Round Table of the nursery,
Of heroes and adventures manifold.

There will be other towers for thee to build;

There will be other steeds for thee to ride

There will be other legends, and all filled

With greater marvels and more glorified.

Build on, and make thy castle3 high and fair,

Rising and reaching upward to the

skies;

Listen to voices in the upper air,

Nor lose thy simple faith in mysteries.

CHANGED.

From the outskirts of the town,

Where of old the mile-stone stood, Now a stranger, looking down I behold the shadowy crown Of the dark and haunted wood.

Is it changed, or am I changed?

Ah! the oaks are fresh and green. But the friends with whom I ranged Through their thickets are estranged

By the years that intervene.

Bright as ever flows the sea,

Bright as ever shines the sun,
But alas! they seem to me
Not the sun that used to be,
Not the tides that used to run.

THE CHALLENGE.

I HAVE a vague remembrance
Of a story, that is told

In some ancient Spanish legend
Or chronicle of old.

It was when brave King Sanchez

Was before Zamora slain, And his great besieging army

Lay encamped upon the plain.

Don Diego de Ordonez

Sallied forth in front of all, And shouted loud his challenge

To the warders on the wall.

All the people of Zamora,

Both the born and the unborn,

As traitors did he challenge
With taunting words of scorn.

The living, in their houses,
And in their graves, the dead!

And the waters of their rivers,

And their wine, and oil, and bread!

There is a greater army,

That besets us round with strife, A starving, numberless army,

At all the gates of life.

The poverty-stricken millions

Who challenge our wine and bread,

And impeach us all as traitors,
Both the living and the dead.

And whenever I sit at the banquet,
Where the feast and song are high,

Amid the mirth and the music
I can hear that fearful cry.

And hollow and haggard faces

Look into the lighted hall, And wasted hands are extended

To catch the crumbs that fall.

For within there is light and plenty,

And odors fill the air; But without there is cold and darkness,

And hunger and despair.

And there in the camp of famine,

In wind and cold and rain, Christ, the great Lord of the army,

Lies dead upon the plain!

THE BROOK AND THE WAVE.

The brooklet came from the mountain,

As sang the bard of old, Running with feet of silver

Over the sands of gold!

Far away in the briny ocean
There rolled a turbulent wave,

Now singing along the sea-beach,
Now howling along the cave.

And the brooklet has found the. billow,
Though they flowed so far apart,

And has filled with its freshness anc sweetness That turbulent, bitter heart!

FROM THE SPANISH CANCIONEROS.

1.

Eves so tristful, eyes so tristful,
Heart so full of care and cumber,
I was lapped in rest and slumber,
Ye have made me wakeful, wistful!

In this life of labor endless
Who shall comfort my distresses?
Querulous my soul and friendless
In its sorrow shuns caresses.
Ye have made me, ye have made me
Querulous of you, that oare not,
Eyes so tristful, yet I dare not
Say to what ye have betrayed me.

2.

Some day, some day,
O troubled breast,
Shalt thou find rest.

If Love in thee
To grief give birth,
Six feet of earth
Can more than he;
There calm and free
And unoppressed
Shalt thou find rest.

The unattained
In life at last,
When life is passed,
Shall all be gained;
And no more pained, .
No more distressed,
Shalt thou find rest.

3.

Come, O Death, so silent flying
That unheard thy coming be,

Lest the sweet delight of dying
Bring life back again to me.

For thy sure approach perceiving
In my constancy and pain
I new life should win again, •
Thinking that I am not living.
So to me, unconscious lying,
All unknown thy coming be,
Lest the sweet delight of dying
Bring life back again to me.

Unto him who finds thee hateful,
Death, thou art inhuman pain;
But to me, who dying gain,
Life is but a task ungrateful.
Come, then, with my wish complying,
All unheard thy coming be,
Lest the sweet delight of dying
Bring life back again to me.

4.

Glove of black in white hand bare,
And about her forehead pale
Wound a thin, transparent veil,
That doth not conceal her hair;
Sovereign attitude and air,
Cheek and neck alike displayed,
With coquettish charms arrayed,
Laughing eyes and fugitive ; —
This is killing men that live,
'T is not mourning for the dead.

AFTERMATH.

When the Summer fields are mown, When the birds are fledged and flown,

And the dry leaves strew the path; With the falling of the snow, With the cawing of the crow, Once again the fields we mow

And gather in the aftermath.

Not the sweet, new grass with flowers Is this harvesting of ours;

Not the upland clover bloom; But the rowen mixed with weeds, Tangled tufts from marsh and meads, Where the poppy drops its seeds

In the silence and the gloom.

EPIMETHEUS,

OR THE POET'S AFTERTHOUGHT.

Have I dreamed 1 or was it real,
What I saw as in a vision,

When to marches hymeneal
In the land of the Ideal
Moved my thought o'er Fields Elysian?

What! are these the guests whose glances
Seemed like sunshine gleaming round

me?

These the wild, bewildering fancies,
That with dithyrambie dances
As with magic circles bound me?

Ah! how cold are their caresses!

Pallid cheeks, and haggard bosoms! Spectral gleam their snow-white dresses, And from loose, dishevelled tresses

Fall the hyacinthine blossoms!

O my songs! whose winsome measures Filled my heart with secret rapture!

Children of my golden leisures!

Must even your delights and pleasures Fade and perish with the capture?

Fair they seemed, those songs sonorous,

When they came to me unbidden;
Voices single, and in chorus,
Like the wild birds singing o'er us
In the dark of branches bidden.

Disenchantment! Disillusion!

Must each noble aspiration Come at last to this conclusion, Jarring discord, wild confusion,

Lassitude, renunciation?

Not with steeper fall nor faster,
From the sun's serene dominions,

Not through brighter realms nor vaster,

In swift ruin and disaster,
Icarus fell with shattered pinions!

Sweet Pandora ! dear Pandora!

Why did mighty Jove create thee Coy as Thetis, fair as Flora, Beautiful as young Aurora,

If to win thee is to hate thee?

No, not hate thee! for this feeling
Of unrest and long resistance

Is but passionate appealing,

A prophetic whisper stealing
O'er the chords of our existence.

Him whom thou dost once enamor,

Thou, beloved, never leavest;
In life's discord, strife, and clamor,
Still he feels thy spell of glamour;
Him of Hope thou ne'er bereavest.

Weary hearts by thee are lifted,

Struggling souls by thee are strengthened,

Clouds of fear asunder rifted,
Truth from falsehood cleansed and sifted,
Lives, like days iu summer, length-
ened!

Therefore art thou ever dearer,
O my Sibyl, my deceiver!

For thou makest each mystery clearer, And the unattained seems nearer,

When thou fillest my heart with fever!

Muse of all the Gifts and Graces! .

Though the fields around us wither, There are ampler realms and spaces, Where no foot has left its traces:

Let us turn and wander thither!

TALES OF A WAYSIDE INN.

PRELUDE.

THE WAYSIDE INN.

Oxr. Autumn night, in Sudbury town,
Across the meadows bare and brown,
The windows of the wayside inn
Gleamed red with fire-iight through the
leaves

Of woodbine, hanging from the eaves
Their crimson curtains rent and thin.

As ancient is this hostelry

As any in the land may be,

Built in the old Colonial day,

When men lived in a grander way,

With ampler hospitality;

A kind of old Hobgoblin Hall,

Now somewhat fallen to decay,

With weather-stains upon the wall,

And stairways worn, and crazy doors,

And creaking and uneven floors.

And chimneys huge, and tiled and tall.

A region of repose it seems,
A place of slumber and of dreams,
Remote among the wooded hills!
For there no noisy railway speeds,
Its torch-race scattering smoke and
gleeds;

But noon and night, the panting teams
Stop under the great oaks, that throw
Tangles of light and shade below,
On roofs and doors and window-sills.
Across the road the barns display
Their lines of stalls, their mows of hay,
Through the wide doors the breezes blow,
The wattled cooks strut to and fro,
And, half effaced by rain and shine,
The Red Horse prances on the sign.

Round this old-fashioned, quaint abode
Deep silence reigned, save when a gust
Went rushing down the county road,
And skeletons of leaves, and dust,
A moment quickened by its breath,
Shuddered and danced their dance of
death,

And through the ancient oaks o'eihead
Mysterious voices moaned and fled.

But from the parlor of the inn

A pleasant murmur smote the ear,

Like water rushing through a weir:

Oft interrupted by the din

Of laughter and of loud applause,

And, in each intervening pause,

The music of a violin.

The fire-light, shedding over all

The splendor of its ruddy glow,

Filled the whole parlor large and low;

It gleamed on wainscot and on wall,

It touched with more than wonted grace

Fair Princess Mary's pictured face;

It bronzed the rafters overhead,

On the old spinet's ivory keys

It played inaudible melodies,

It crowned the sombre clock with flame,

The hands, the hours, the maker's name,

And painted with a livelier red

The Landlord's coat-of-arms again;

And, flashing on the window-pane,

Emblazoned with its light and shade

The jovial rhymes, that still remain,

Writ near a century ago,

By the great Major Molineaux,

Whom Hawthorne has immortal made.

Before the blazing fire of wood
Erect the rapt musician stood;
And ever and anon he bent
His head upon his instrument,
And seemed to listen, till he caught
Confessions of its secret thought, —
The joy, the triumph, the lament,
The exultation and the pain;
Then, by the magic of his art,
He soothed the throbbings of its heart,
And lulled it into peace again.

Around the fireside at their ease
There sat a group of friends, entranced
With the delicious melodies;
Who from the far-olf noisy town
Had to the wayside inn come down,
To rest beneath its old oak-trees.
The fire-light on their faces glanced,
Their shadows on the wainscot danced,
And, though of different lands and
speech,

Each had his tale to tell, and each
Was anxious to be pleased and please.
And while the sweet musician plays,
Let me in outline sketch them all,
Perchance uncouthly as the blaze
With its uncertain touch portrays
Their shadowy semblance on the wall.

But first the Landlord will I trace;
Grave in his aspect and attire;
A man of ancient pedigree,
A Justice of the Peace was he,
Known in all Sudbury as "The Squire."
Proud was he of his name and race,
Of old Sir William and Sir Hugh,
And in the parlor, full in view,
His coat-of-arms, well framed and glazed,
Upon the wall in colors blazed;
He beareth gules upon his shield,
A chevron argent in the field,
With three wolf s heads, and for the crest
A Wyvern part-per-pale addressed
Upon a helmet barred; below
The scroll reads, '' By the name of
Howe."

And over this, no longer bright,
Though glimmering with a latent light,
Was hung the sword his grandsire bore
In the rebellious days of yore,
Down there at Concord in the fight.

A youth was there, of quiet ways,
A Student of old books and days.
To whom all tongues and lands were
known

And yet a lover of his own;
With many a social virtue graced,

And yet a friend of solitude;

A man of such a genial mood

Th heart of all things he embraced,

And yet of such fastidious taste,

He never found the best too good.

Books were his passion and delight,

And in his upper room at home

Stood many a rare and sumptuous tome,

In vellum bound, with gold bedight,

Great volumes garmented in white,

Recalling Florence, Pisa, Rome.

He loved the twilight that surrounds

The border-land of old romance;

Where glitter hauberk, helm, and lance,

And banner waves, and trumpet sounds,

And ladies ride with hawk on wrist,

And mighty warriors sweep along,

Magnified by the purple mist,

The dusk of centuries and of song.

The chronicles of Charlemagne,

Of Merlin and the Mort d'Arthure,

Mingled together in his brain

With tales of Flores and Blanchefleur,

Sir Ferumbras, Sir Eglamour,

Sir Launcelot, Sir Morgadour,

Sir Guy, Sir Bevis, Sir Gawain.

A young Sicilian, too, was there;
In sight of Etna born and bred,
Some breath of its volcanic air
Was glowing in his heart and brain,
And, being rebellious to his liege,
After Palermo's fatal siege,
Across the western seas he fled,
In good King Bomba's happy reign.
His face was like a summer night,
All flooded with a dusky light;
His hands were small; his teeth shone
white

As sea-shells, when he smiled or spoke;
His sinews supple and strong as oak;
Clean shaven was he as a priest,
Who at the mass on Sunday sings,
Save that upon his npper lip
His beard, a good palm's length at
least,

Level and pointed at the tip,
Shot sideways, like a swallow's wings.
The poets read he o'er and o'er,
And most of all the Immortal Four
Of Italy; and next to those,
The story-telling bard of prose,
Who wrote the joyous Tuscan tales
Of the Decameron, that make
Fiesole's green hills and vales
Remembered for Boccaccio's sake.
Much too of music was his thought;

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